It’s the 66th year of Independence and India has come long way since then. India viewed education as an effective tool for bringing social change through community development. And while the state is improving, the country is still miles behind in terms of economic- socio maturation. Children in rural areas continue to be deprived of quality education owing to factors like lack of competent and committed teachers, lack of textbooks or teaching-learning materials, and so on. Country cannot make any progression without empowering rural masses and its development.
A large portion of India accounts for rural population hence the topic of rural education is of utmost importance. A recent survey done by the Annual Status of Education report states that although the number of children attending schools in rural areas is continuously rising, more than half of the children in 5th grade are not able to read and write properly or solve simple mathematical calculations .This only shows the credibility of education being inculcated.
There are many reasons to be concerned about the state of rural education in the country. One is Quality of education as there is lack of error free textbooks and complete lack of committed teachers around such schools. Another major reason is that people in rural areas aren’t able to comprehend clearly the role education can make in their lives. They see it as wastage of time, instead in which their ward can earn money by performing child labor. While public schools are off limits for these people with limited resources, government schools lacks the traits of being a proper school. While some schools in rural areas are overly populated, hence distorting the teacher-students ratio, in others there are no proper facilities of sanitation or even clean drinking water. Tragedies like midday meal food poisoning and demolition of school buildings also gives a set back to the attendance in these schools.
While the difference between a student coming from an urban background and another from a rural background isn’t the IQ level, the educational upbringing which is responsible for overall skills. A desperate need lies in reconsidering the curriculum, infrastructural needs and committed teaching methods in government schools for only this could encourage and enhance the literacy rate of the country. After all, Education is more than reading and writing, it is one of the most important investments a country can make in its people and its future to become economically developed and reduce poverty.
Written by- Ms. Pooja Singh, B N Satnalika Foundation Intern (Student at Ajay Garg Institute, Ghaziabad)